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  #1  
Old 03-09-2010, 11:31 PM
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Join Date: May 2000
Location: Scotts Valley, CA.
Posts: 145
Add aftermarket head unit to stock Bose system

Hi all,
I just bought a 1997 C-280 and I have some questions. I hope that someone has experience with this situation and can provide some answers for me.

The car has the original factory stereo system in it. That's the cassette player head unit, a 6-CD changer in the trunk (says Mercedes Benz on it) and the speakers on the rear parcel tray (the ledge below the rear window) say Bose. I am presuming that the car came with a Bose "system" (speakers? amp & speakers?). The power must have been interrupted to the car at one point because the head unit is asking for the anti-theft code (which I don't have at the moment). I will provide the info to the dealer and obtain the proper code to re-activate the stereo system.

I would like to update the sound system and put in an after-market head unit. Ideally, I'd like to spend $200-225 for the components and install myself. What I would like to do is to install a head unit with single CD-player that will also act as a controller for the CD-changer in the back. I want to keep the stock wiring and components (MANDATORY) and would like it to have an input for iPod / iPhone (prefer USB).

I will start looking at Crutchfield (www.crutchfield.com) but was wondering if the collective brain trust on this forum has experience and can steer me with good info.

THANKS IN ADVANCE FOR EVERYONE'S HELP.
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Jay Yambrovich
Scotts Valley, CA.

1993 300 CE Cabriolet (A124) 131K miles
1997 C-280 133K miles

2000 BMW R1100RT 69K miles
1989 300 E 216K miles (sold)
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  #2  
Old 03-10-2010, 12:01 AM
amosfella's Avatar
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Join Date: Jun 2006
Location: Vulcan, AB, Canada
Posts: 787
Check audio 10. There's a guy that sells them flashed for the US market for about $249. http://www.perfectmarketaudio.com/

They are apparently a direct drop in... Minimal modification needed.
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  #3  
Old 03-19-2010, 10:05 AM
RichardM98's Avatar
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Join Date: Oct 2007
Location: SoCal
Posts: 651
Quote:
Originally Posted by yambrovich View Post
I would like to update the sound system and put in an after-market head unit. Ideally, I'd like to spend $200-225 for the components and install myself. What I would like to do is to install a head unit with single CD-player that will also act as a controller for the CD-changer in the back. I want to keep the stock wiring and components (MANDATORY) and would like it to have an input for iPod / iPhone (prefer USB).
I may be mistaken but I don't think anyone has that combination. That is a HU with a CD and the correct output to control the factory CD changer. I guess my question would be WHY? If you have an iPod (Aux IN) connection, the CD changer is redundant. I'm not saying tear it out but just disconnect it. Beside the inconvenience factor, trunk mounted changers have a lot of issues with jammed cartridges, connection issues, etc.

In most cases if you want to use the factory CD changer, you'll need a compatible factory radio. Also, MB switched to an optical cable for the changer about 10 years ago so anything new would not be compatible with your wired changer. BTW, if you didn't know, Becker can install an Aux In on your current radio for about $150 but you wouldn't have any of the other features you are interested in.

I would suggest just selecting an aftermarket radio with the features you like and install it. Those from crutchfield come with radio removal keys and a patch cable to go from the MB wiring harness to the new radio. Plug and play. Just input your car info and select one on the recommended list to ensure compatibility.

As for perfectmarketaudio, one word of caution. I purchased a Becker 7882 from him. The transaction was fine but I had a little glitch in the radio (auto off didn't work) and was shocked to find that the US warranty on Becker radios starts from the time it's imported not the time you buy it. He insisted that was not true but Becker NA said it was. He said he would straighten it out but never followed through. Fortunately, the glitch corrected itself and the radio has worked fine for the last 2 years. There's also a Becker dealer called Southwest Stereo (Az?). Google if interested.

Good luck.

Last edited by RichardM98; 03-20-2010 at 08:20 PM.
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  #4  
Old 03-20-2010, 07:25 PM
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Join Date: May 2000
Location: Scotts Valley, CA.
Posts: 145
Aftermarket H.U. - update

RichardM98,
I agree with you and even before you posted it, went with a Kenwood H.U. with built-in Bluetooth to allow hands-free phone use.

I simply disconnected the CD changer in the back (having a difficult time actually figuring out how to remove the bracket!), capped off the connector and it's done.

This is GREAT!
__________________
Jay Yambrovich
Scotts Valley, CA.

1993 300 CE Cabriolet (A124) 131K miles
1997 C-280 133K miles

2000 BMW R1100RT 69K miles
1989 300 E 216K miles (sold)
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